Back to full-time, in-person learning for all Walpole students

WALPOLE, Mass. — Monday was the first day of the first full week back in school for most elementary students across Massachusetts.

Some school districts, like Walpole, are allowing all grades back for full time in-person learning this week as well.

For the first time in over a year, hallways were packed with students at Walpole High School Monday.

“It was crazy to see all these people here today,” said Ainsley Roof, a freshman at Walpole High. “It was a little nerve-racking just because this was probably the most amount of people I’ve been around and a lot of us have been around in a really, really long time.”

It’s a big change for so many students who spent the last year mostly at home learning remotely.

“Teachers are trying to stop working on the computer as much and use paper more because like all the screen time has been kind of bad, so I’m excited for that,” said Autumn Mathews, a sophomore at Walpole High.

Using real paper and actually seeing teachers and classmates in person gave students a sense of normalcy, except they still need to wear masks during class and stay at least six feet apart during lunch, with desks only 3 feet apart in class.

“It was nice to kind of be able to meet classmates because even though we’ve spent the year together, it’s our first time actually meeting in person, so it felt kind of like a first day,” said Roof.

The first day of the first full week back in school for so many across the state.

“Getting up early every day can be a pain,” said Mathews.

Other high schools across the state may not return to fully in person until next month.

As of now state leaders say middle school students need to be back in school five days a week by April 28.

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